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ATTENTION: Small and Emerging Small Business Program Participants. RicMan Construction, Inc. is soliciting cost proposals for the City of Omaha; OPW 52223 (CSO), South Interceptor Force Main – North Segment from Small and Emerging Small Business, and other entities defined as socially and/or economically disadvantaged Subcontractors/Vendors for Trucking, Aggregates, Misc. Concrete, and Site Restoration. Bids will be opened: Wednesday, May 07, 2014 @ 11:00 AM. Those interested in providing a quote for this project are encouraged to contact Lloyd Lambrix, Ric-Man Construction, Inc., Phone (586) 739-5210 Fax (586) 739-8290 email: llambrix@ric-man. com, Ric-Man Construction, Inc. is an Equal-Opportunity Employer. OFFICE MANAGER ACLU of Nebraska seeks a detailoriented office manager/bookkeeper to manage accounting and clerical tasks. ACLU of Nebraska is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals to apply. For more information call 1-855-557-2258 or go to www.aclunebraska.org. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR ACLU of Nebraska seeks a dynamic and experienced chief executive to head the state office. The successful candidate will have a passion for civil liberties, experience in management, fund raising, and coalition building. The Executive Director is the public spokesperson for ACLU of Nebraska and directs the programs and activities of the organization, reporting to its Board of Directors. ACLU of Nebraska is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and encourages women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals to apply. For more information call 1-855-557-2258 or go to www. aclunebraska.org. AIRLINE CAREERS begin here – Get trained as FAA certified Aviation Technician. Financial aid for qualified students. Job placement assistance. Call Aviation Institute of Maintenance 800-725-1563 (AAN CAN)

CAESARS ENTERTAINMENT Centralized Scheduling Specialist-Harrah’s and Horseshoe Casinos. Go to OmahaJobs.com. VON MAUR Full-Time Sales Associate. Go to OmahaJobs.com for information. ARROW STAGELINES Bus Driver/Motorcoach Operators (FT & PT). Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information. DOUGLAS COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS Corrections Officer. Contact Natalie Wilson at Natalie.wilson@ douglascounty-ne.gov. Go to OmahaJobs.com for information. OMAHA STEAKS Freezer Assembler. Go to OmahaJobs.com for more information. CABELA’S Softlines Department Manager. Go to OmahaJobs.com for Info. SECURITAS SECURITY SERVICES, INC. Security Supervisor/Rover. Contact Shannon Gernandt at Shannon.gernandt@securitasinc.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. SUNCO Landscape Install. Contact Bobbie Feldhaus at bobbie@suncolawns.com. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information. AAA LIFE INSURANCE Customer Sales & Service Representative. Contact Jessica Rudol at jmrudol@aaane.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for information.

EMS, INC. Guest Services Associate. Contact Janelle Hyman at jhyman@ emscrm.com. Go to OmahaJob. KEYSTONE TAVERN & GRILL Line cook-fry cook. Contact Tim at keystone.tavern@cox.net. Go to OmahaJobs.com for information. THE READER Route Driver. Contact Clay Seaman at 402-672-2012 or clayseaman@TheReader.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. FUTURE FOAM Maintenance Mechanic. Contact Rich Harger at 712-323-6718 Ext. 208 or rharger@futurefoam.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. BOND NO. 9 NEW YORK Part-Time Luxury Sales Representative. Contact Lisa Rediker at 646284-9015 or at careers@bondno9. com Go to OmahaJobs.com. HY-VEE Caribou Barista – 180th & Pacific. Contact Shira Moore at 1478hrmgr@hy-vee.com or 402334-444. Go to OmahaJobs.com for more information. EATON Supervisor – Gears Product Engineer. Go to OmahaJobs.com for more information. OMAHA STEAKS Digital Marketing Manager & Freezer Assembler (Part-Time).. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. CPS HR CONSULTING Exam Proctor. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information.

THE THOMPSON COMPANY Corporate Safety Coordinator/Logistics Analyst. Contact Jim Hoss at jhoss@tobafoods.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com.

DENT RECON Automotive Paint Technician. Contact Kate Miller at 224-2797716 or careers@dentrecon.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info.

GEICO Full-Time Outbound Insurance Sales Agent. Contact job4you732@msn.com. Go to OmahaJobs.com for more information.

ALEGENT CREIGHTON HEALTH Driver II Bergan Central Kitchen PT. Contact Todd Molstad at 402-717-1849 or todd.molstad@ alegent.org. Go to OmahaJobs. com for more information

STERITECH Pest Route Professional (SS). Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. PLANET FITNESS Overnight Staff. Apply at apply@ pfomaha.com or call at (402)9323737. Go to OmahaJobs.com.

ALEGENT CREIGHTON HEALTH RN Post Anesthesia Care Unit FT Day/Evening Immanuel Medical Center. Contact Jennifer Acker at 402-717-1883 or at Jennifer. acker@alegent.org. Go to OmahaJobs.com for more information.

CORESLAB STRUCTURES Now Hiring Multiple Positions. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. OMAHA CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC Receptionist Administrative Assistant. Contact Diane Owens at dianeowens@omahacm.org. Go to OmahaJobs.com for info. MINNEAPOLIS BASED COMPANY Expanding across nation. We need sales reps with excellent opportunity to move into sales management. Excellent commissions. We train. Ag/construction experience a plus. Call 1-888372-0594 ext405 (MCN) WE’RE GROWING! McFarland Truck Lines. We need Class A company/drivers and owner/operators. Great pay/ benefits package. Stay in the Midwest; be home on weekends. www.mcfgtl.com. Call Scott 507437-9905 (MCN) PAID IN ADVANCE! Make $1000 a week mailing brochures from home! Genuine Opportunity! No experience required. Start Immediately! www. localmailers.net (VOID IN SD) (MCN) AVON AGENTS WANTED! Start Your Business Today!! 1-800-206-0799 www.propeL92. com (MCN) $1,000 WEEKLY!! MAILING BROCHURES From Home. Helping home workers since 2001. Genuine Opportunity. No Experience required. Start Immediately www.mailingmembers. com (AAN CAN) AFRICA, BRAZIL WORK/STUDY! Change the lives of others while creating a sustainable future. 6, 9, 18 month programs available. Apply today! www.OneWorldCenter.org (269) 591-0518 info@ OneWorldCenter.org (AAN CAN) EARN $500 A DAY as Airbrush Media Makeup Artist. For Ads, TV, Film, Fashion. One Week Course. Train & Build Portfolio. 15% OFF TUITION. AwardMakeupSchool.com 818980-2119 (AAN CAN)

OFFICE IN THE HEART OF Small, public-facing office available in the heart of South Omaha with shared reception area and conference room. Includes street signage opportunity and internet. Great Value!

Please contact Clay Seaman, clays@thereader.com or 402-341-7323 x108 if you are interested.

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APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

| THE READER |

omaha jobs

ProKarma Jobs Business System Analyst #SRBSA0414

Information Technology System requirements gathering, functional specification, high-level design, defining the solution, test planning, and coordination of system rollouts by using various computer skill sets. Requires Masters Degree or foreign equivalent in Information Systems, Computer Science, Science, Engineering (any) with one year of Information Technology-related experience; or, alternatively, a Bachelors degree or foreign equivalent in Information Systems, Computer Science, Engineering (any) with five years of progressive Information Technology-related experience. Foreign equivalent degree acceptable. Experience must include Information Technology System requirements gathering, functional specification, high-level design, defining the solution, test planning, and coordination of system rollouts by using various computer skill sets.

Senior Software Engineer #SRAND0414

Analyze user needs, modify and develop software by using various computer skill sets. Requires Masters Degree or foreign equivalent in Information Systems, Computer Science, Science, Engineering (any) with one year of Information Technology-related experience; or, alternatively, a Bachelors degree or foreign equivalent in Information Systems, Computer Science, Engineering (any) with five years of progressive Information Technology-related experience. Foreign equivalent degrees acceptable. Experience must include skills in Enterprise Java, Android SDK, JavaScript, JSON/ REST Services.

Software Engineer #AND0414

Analyze user needs, modify and develop software by using various computer skill sets. Bachelors degree or foreign equivalent in Information Systems, Computer Science, Engineering (any) or equivalent to bachelors by combination of education and experience and two years of progressive Information Technology-related experience. Foreign equivalent degrees acceptable. Experience must include skills in Enterprise Java, Android SDK, JavaScript, JSON/ REST Services. Multiple full time positions based in Omaha, NE headquarters; but relocation is possible to various unanticipated work sites anywhere in the United States. Note: a relocation is not a travel requirement for performance of the job duties. A background/reference check is required.

SEND RESUMES TO: ProKarma, Inc., Attn: Jobs, 222 S 15th St. #505N, Omaha, NE 68102 or email: postings@prokarma.com. with Job Ref# in the subject line of the email


| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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n MORE REASONS TO LOVE THE ASKSARBEN FARMER’S MARKET: The popular breakfast joint in West O, Over Easy, 16859 Q St., is joining forces with Liv Lounge in Aksarben Village to serve a grab-and-go breakfast during this seasons’ Aksarben farmers market. Over Easy will also offer a sit-down buffet to all market go-ers while Liv Lounge serves drinks, mimosas and bloody marys. For more information on the market, visit omahafarmersmarket.com/aksarben-village. n IS IT PATIO SEASON YET? Finally, Omaha is on the cusp of patio season. So stop by Corkscrew Wine and Cheese, 10924 Prairie Brook Road in Rockbrook Village, and enjoy their quaint patio. Another reason to stop by is that their Rosé has started to arrive. Recently, they have received 13 cases of the most popular Bieler Pere et Fils. They are also currently pouring a Montepulciano Rosé by the glass. Stop out and see Janell and Justin this afternoon for a glass. n CORN TORTILLAS GALORE AT THE NEWEST SUPER MERCADO An alternative Mexican-inspired grocery store has just opened in South Omaha and is very different from the traditional “big box” store. With the newest Supermercado Nuestra Familia, located at 18th and Vinton, the focus is all about fresh produce, local art and fresh corn tortillas.The store features a beautiful mural painted by a local artist that celebrates Mexican-American heritage. It also features a new tortilla machine that can make up to 800 corn tortillas every hour! Visit their website for weekly specials and for other locations at www. omahasupermercado.com. n THE PAPILLION PIZZA RANCH CELEBRATES OUR SOLIDERS The Papillion Pizza Ranch, 8810 S. 71st Plaza, is inviting soldiers and their families to come in and celebrate their return home. On April 26, returning soldiers will eat for free and their families will receive a fifty percent discount off their meal. Additionally, every Thursday after, soldiers can enjoy the pizza buffet at a discounted price. For active military soldiers, the lunch buffet will cost $6.50 and the dinner buffet will cost $7.50. n TOAST NEBRASKA WINES Hosted by the Nebraska Winery and Grape Growers Association and Blur Parties, the first annual “Toast Nebraska” wine festival is scheduled for May 3 and 4 at Mahoney State Park. Listen to Reggae and sip wine while noshing on unique foods from Omaha’s new restaurant Fusion BBQ, who will be serving their slow smoked meats. There will also be wood-fired pizza, Mexican cuisine and cupcakes from Le Cupcake, voted Lincoln’s CHOICE for Cupcakes and featured on Cupcake Wars in 2012. This event is sponsored by the Nebraska Tourism Commission and Nebraska Game and Parks. Tickets can be purchased at www.toastnebraska.com. n EAST MEETS WEST IN THE BBQ WORLD Benson welcomes Fusion BBQ to their hip restaurant scene. Located at 7024 Maple, Fusion BBQ focuses on flavors across the globe to create their “fusion” BBQ. Check them out and let us know what you think by posting your thoughts to The Reader’s facebook page. For more information on Fusion BBQ, go to www.fusionbq.com. n NEBRASKA’S BEST BURGER CONTEST HAS A WINNER For the second year, Stella’s Bar and Grill in Bellevue won the prize of Nebraska’s Best Burger, which was recently announced by The Nebraska Beef Council. To see the list of contenders, visit www.nebeef.org. n NEW CHEF AT TASTE New to Taste in Rockbrook Village, 11036 Elm St. is executive chef and partner, Ryan Devitt. Devitt hails from South Sioux City where he was named to the Best Chefs America list three years in a row. — Krista O’Malley Crumbs is about indulging in food and celebrating its many forms. Send information about area food and drink businesses to crumbs@thereader.com.

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| THE READER |

THREE LOCAL BARS F E AT U R E D O N S P I K E T V ’ S ‘ B A R R E S C U E ’ W I T H N I G H TL I F E G U R U J O N TA F F E R BY TRESSA ECKERMANN

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hree local bars will be featured on the hit Spike TV network show, “Bar Rescue.” Sorties Tavern which is located in Bellevue, Oasis Hookah Bar and TaZa nightclub, located downtown and O Face Bar, which is located in Council Bluffs, are all the focus of episodes. “Bar Rescue” which premiered in July of 2011 features Jon Taffer, a food and beverage industry consultant entering nightclubs and bars with a team of professionals and helping them to reorganize, remodel, and fix any other internal issues the business is suffering from. Taffer frequently offers his professional expertise and is known to be quite confrontational while he attempts to get his point across to an owner or employee. Sorties Tavern, formerly O’Banions, was contacted by show producers last year when they were looking for local bars that were willing to be featured on the show. Producers visited the bar four or five times interviewing owners and Jerry and David Dalrymple, as well as employees. They eventually filmed in November of 2013. Their episode aired this March. “We were ready or a new and fresh look,” Jerry says. That fresh look included their new name, and a new store front. They also focused on creating new cocktail recipes, training for their bar staff and waitresses as well as helping them implement a system for accepting credit cards, which the bar had never used before. Jerry says that they ultimately “reworked the system.” “They really showed us what we were doing wrong. We did not have a lot of bar running experience and we were in a rut after 8 years.

dish

We just needed a boost.” Jerry says that the bar, which is located near Offutt Air Force Base and has a military theme, is now more focused then ever on providing the best service to their customers who they say are “great people,” many of them are military veterans and are nice people who just want to listen to music, drink and relax. “It’s not a nightclub environment,” Jerry says, adding that you wont go broke buying a beer. As for the state of their bar now, it’s going very well. “We’re seeing a lot more repeat customers, which is always a good thing.” Oasis Hookah bar and TaZa Nightclub, the second bar featured on “Bar Rescue,” contacted producers and didn’t hear from them for nearly a year. Owner Jesse Hill also spent several months in contact with producers before they filmed in mid November. Much like Sorties Bar Jesse admits that he didn’t have much experience with running a bar, since their establishment was primarily a hookah bar. “We were a ragtag bunch,” Hill says when referring to himself, his management team and employees. “We were really just operating on trial and error.” The filming experience and knowledge that Taffer and his team gave them taught Jesse and his employees “management on everybody’s part.” He says that the show was able to “get us on the edge that we needed to be on.” Hill equates filming to a “bar boot camp” and admits that there was a lot yelling but that Taffer and his team pointed out many appearance issues with the club that needed to be addressed. The Bar Rescue team installed a new computer

and entertainment system, repainted and installed new furniture. The staff, Hill included, also learned how important presentation and professionalism is. “We realized that if you don’t give respect the customer wont either.” Hill points out that being a part of “Bar Rescue” has greatly benefited the establishment but he does admit that it wasn’t easy. The first week after the “Bar Rescue” team left the club was “dead.” This was due mostly to the hookahs being removed and minors no longer being allowed into that section of the club. Loosing their “core demographic” hurt them so they eventually reinstated the hookah bar. While doing this they created a more modern, Moroccan theme. Hill says that people should come and experience his club because the staff is now more concerned with their performance. “It really starts from the top down, we’re more focused on providing a good experience.” He wants his customers to go away impressed by the staff, management and the environment that has been created. He also emphasized that many first time customers don’t know what to expect when visiting a hookah bar but that his staff is very knowledgeable and willing to give advice. , O Face Bar was unavailable for comment for this article but is located at 2400 9th Ave. in Council Bluffs. The Iowa establishment was featured on the March 23 episode of “Bar Rescue.” Oasis Hookah bar and TaZa Nightclub is located at 1507 Farnam St. That episode will air April 27.


heartlandhealing N E W A G E H E A LT H A N D W E L L N E S S B Y M I C H A E L B R AU N S T E I N

Green, Green Grass of Home

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he lure of verdure Most of the world snickers at the American ideal of recreating a pastoral lea in front of and behind every dream home. To most, having a lush, green lawn is a mark of affluence, prestige, pride and joy. We are so enamored with the lure of verdure that we spend over $5 billion yearly on just lawn fertilizers alone. Another $30 billion goes to lawn care companies to groom the green. To say we’re crazy about grass is an understatement. When green is obscene I have tried endlessly to get a straight answer from companies like TruGreen and others about what chemicals they use with their services. I’ve talked to local franchises and national offices and have never gotten a straight response, never an actual list or comment of what those chemicals are. All I got was a runaround. But I do know that they use dangerous chemicals and fossil fuelderived fertilizers. And they put out little flags to warn users to keep children and pets off their sprayed lawns. When we use chemicals on our lawns to keep them bug and weed free, those chemicals show up in our bodies. It doesn’t take much to figure out that if something kills a living organism, it may not be a good idea for that substance to be building up in our own cells. Apparently, a lot of people would rather have green grass than healthy children, pets and bodies. People toss around devastating weed-zapping chemicals like they were little more than watering the grass just to take the easy route to a green lawn. But experts are now warning us we may be endangering our own health as well as the micro-environment that is our own lawn. The current crop of popular lawn chemicals may be as dangerous as the ones that have ended up being banned over the past decades. There was a time that DDT was considered as safe as mother’s milk — until it started showing up there. We were told DDT was safe but it was banned in 1972. Dursban, (chlorpyrifos) was another popular poison commonly used on lawns and even sprayed indoors. We were even told it was “natural” because “it’s made from the active ingredients from organic chemicals and is totally safe.” But it ended up banned by the EPA for home use in June of 2000. One scientist for the EPA, Dr. Routt Reigart, was quoted by CNN as saying “There are concerns with many of the chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides,” he said. “You should use the chemicals as little

as possible — and in many cases that means never at all.” Most importantly we must realize the danger and the cost of those lawn chemicals is unnecessary. There are better ways to a green lawn. Get real Change your perspective. Lawns need not be 100% weed-free or golf-course perfect. If you change your outlook, you may end up with a diverse ecology in your yard with plants other than grass that can be equally as attractive. You can still groom. Proper mowing After grass is established, cut it at the longest setting with a sharp blade. Longer grass holds more moisture and shades the groundcover to deny weed growth. Leave the clippings Use a mower that can cut the grass so finely that it leaves the grass blade residue behind as an organic fertilizer. That lessens the need for additional fertilizers. Note: If you are just beginning to wean your lawn off drugs, collect and discard the clippings. They contain the very chemicals you are trying to avoid. Fertilize with organic, like chicken poop, when needed. Water wisely Water deeply rather than often. Be accurate. Don’t water the driveway. Be innovative. We dress the hose from our air conditioner condensation so that it irrigates our garden. Control weeds and bugs naturally Learn about using aphids, mealy worms, etc., One ladybug eats about 100 aphids a day. A herd of ladybugs beats a gallon of poison. A few minutes spent in the yard digging weeds or crabgrass is a non-toxic way to rid the lawn of plant pests. Overseed bare patches. The thicker the grass, the less likely it is that weeds will survive. Often a rinse with a garden hose can knock pests from plants. Some sources recommend spraying a very weak solution of biodegradable dish soap liquid and water for many insects. Even grubs have natural enemies. There is a type of nematode that attacks them and leaves all else alone. Xeriscape Devised by a water utilities planner in Denver in the 1980s, xeriscaping is the practice of choosing indigenous plants for your yard that survive without irrigation or with little water beyond that which is provided by nature. The plants chosen vary by climatic region but may include ornate grasses, flowering plants, shrubs and so on. Once established, the result can be a very low-maintenance yard that is both beautiful and ecologically healthy without the need of excessive watering or chemical applications. Be well. ,

HEARTLAND HEALING is a New Age polemic describing alternatives to conventional methods

of healing the body, mind and planet. It is provided as information and entertainment, certainly not medical advice. It is not an endorsement of any particular therapy, either by the writer or The Reader. Visit HeartlandHealing.com for more information.

VISIONS FROM FIVE MINUTES INTO THE FUTURE • APRIL 24, 2014 • An unexpected and unwelcome trend will reappear in the next few years: the duel. Both men and women will turn to this ancient blood rite to settle disputes and defend their honor, sometimes meeting in parks with guns to draw on each other, sometimes slashing at

each other with knives, and sometimes even drawing swords on each other. This is, of course, illegal, and so will be an underground phenomenon, but common enough to account for 10 percent of the deaths of young people. En garde, world of tomorrow.

2ND ANNUAL

Embrace Creativity! May 10

10 a.m.

$35

Mixed Media with Dori Settles

May 24

10 a.m.

$65

Blacksmithing with Elmo Diaz

May 24

10 a.m.

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Lampworking with Kathy Diaz

Information and Registration OmahaCreativeInstitute.org Rebecca@OmahaCreativeInstitute.org 785-218-3061

heartland healing

Mindful Writing Retreat

Eugene T. Mahoney State Park ASHLAND, NE - PETER KIEWIT LODGE

Saturday May 10, 9am-4pm Part writing workshop, part meditative retreat and part artistic community. We provide a safe, inspiring place to explore, create & tap your deep writing voice. REGISTRATION $85 EDUCATORS $75 STUDENTS (16 & OVER) $65 (includes lunch & park usage fee) For questions or to register, email emack@centurylink.net or visit mindfulwriters.org

| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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he University of Nebraska at Omaha has a veritable folk-hero in its midst in hard-throwing senior softball ace Dana Elsasser, who’s overcame serious challenges to become a pitching phenom. With her near legendary career fast nearing its end, fans have only a few chances left to catch her in action. In her No. 1 pitcher role she’ll get the ball at least twice in this weekend’s (April 25-26) three-game home series against Summit League foe IUPUI. She enters the circle for the final time at home versus Drake on April 30. UNO, with an RPI in the 60s, concludes its season May 2-3 at Western Illinois. The team’s guaranteed to finish with a winning record and Elsasser should climb UNO’s career pitching charts. Entering Tuesday’s doubleheader versus North Dakota she was 21-7 on the year and 65-24 in her career with a lifetime ERA of 1.44. Though soon exhausting her eligibility, her legend’s sure to grow as a foundational figure in UNO’s transition from Division II to D-I. Her departure’s coming too soon for head coach Jeanne Scarpello. She’s been enamored with Elsasser’s ability and character since first laying eyes on her in 2010. “From day one you could tell she’s a different kid – just the drive and what she wanted to do and what she wanted to be. She’s never going to back down from a challenge. She gives 100 percent and expects the rest of us to do the same. She pushes us to be better.”

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Scarpello’s admiration only grew upon learning the obstacles Elsasser faced en route to becoming a winner. “She does have quite a story,” the coach says. Born “a premie” in San Antonio, Texas, to a teenage mother, Dana started life in foster care. After raising kids of their own Rick and Barb Elsasser of Hershey, Neb. were looking to adopt and the white couple got matched with Dana, an African-American, when she was a week old. She became the only black resident of Hershey until the Elsassers adopted more children of color. Dana was an athletic prodigy, proving a natural at seemingly whatever she tried, including softball, basketball, volleyball and track. “Dana’s balance, hand-eye coordination and kinesthetic sense have always been exceptional,” says her father, a principal and coach who worked with her on her fundamentals. especially her pitching mechanics. “Every time she was shown a new skill she would master it quickly. She has always hated to lose but she used to become discouraged easily when her team was behind and that affected her play. Experience in athletics has given her the tenacity to fight through disappointment. Her UNO coaches deserve a great deal of credit for instilling a fierce competitive spirit.” Just as she was turning heads athletically as a teen she developed scoliosis, a severe curvature of the spine. She underwent fusion surgery at the Mayo Clinic. Pieces of her hip bone were fused to her spine

| THE READER |

cover story

with “rods, nuts and bolts to keep everything intact,” Dana says. “The scoliosis thing was scary. Dana faced it all with great courage and determination,” Rick says. Once cleared to resume athletics she and her dad left the hospital and drove around until they found a ball diamond and began playing catch. “I was a little scared I wouldn’t be able to pitch again but I recovered relatively quickly from the back thing and it just gave me fuel to get stronger because I had to work two times as hard to get where other people were. I just did as much as I could. I ran a lot, I did sprints. I was in the weight room. I got really strong. I think strengthening my body is what helped me be prepared for college,” says Dana, who’s known to workout on game days and on off days following games. “I feel I need to get in the mood of ‘It’s go time.’ Otherwise, I feel tired and sluggish and just not ready to go.” After opting to specialize in softball her pitching took off under her dad’s tutelage. Her high school didn’t field a team, She made a name for herself out west playing summers with the North Platte Sensations. Typical of the upbeat Elsasser, she takes in stride everything that’s been put in front of her. “Honestly, when I was growing up I really didn’t see much of the adversity I overcame as a disadvantage. I haven’t thought of it as things that set me back. When I tell people my story they’re like, ‘Wasn’t it

weird being the only black person in town?’ I never thought of it like that. My parents did a really good job of just making things normal for me.” Rick Elsasser says Dana has an innate ability to adapt and persevere. “Dana has always had tremendous resolve. I remember when she was about 5 or 6 years old, I spent about 15 minutes showing her how to shoot a basketball and then left her to practice. I went back outside about two hours later and found her still shooting. I had to make her stop and eat.” Scarpello long ago gave up trying to get Elsasser to ease off. The coach still smiles at nearly missing on this model student-athlete who outworks everyone. After all, Dana was a-best-kept secret in the sticks, where her exploits four-hours away fell on deaf ears here. Scarpello first heard of her via a letter Dana wrote her while a senior in high school. Dana mentioned she was (then) 5-foot-4 and threw 65. Scarpello didn’t buy it. She’d never heard of someone so short throwing so hard. It took corroboration from two coaches before she decided to see this little dynamo for herself. Scarpello and pitching coach Cory Petermann drove to Hastings expecting to see Elsasser pitch in a game only to have it forfeited when the opposing club didn’t show. The coaches had Dana warm up with her father for a private audition. Rick had caught his daughter countless times in the yard of their home sitting on a bucket as she threw from a continued on page 8y


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Porsche, VW, Mercedes, Audi or BMW Car show check-in: 9am to 10am Awards 3pm. For show info contact: maifestcarshow@germanamericansociety.org

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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y continued from page 6 make-do mound. This was different. The stakes were higher, though that didn’t register with Dana until reminded of it. “I was really nervous but actually I don’t think I even realized how important it was when they were watching me – that if I do good I’m going to have college paid for,” Dana says. “When I started out I wasn’t throwing my hardest. My dad told me, ‘Get it together, this is your time right here to do it.” Then I knew it was a big deal.’” With a radar gun trained on her she consistently clocked 65 and Scarpello had seen enough to be convinced. Rising to the occasion is something Scarpello’s come to rely on from Elsasser, who acknowledges she thrives in such situations. “I like it when I’m in pressure spots and everyone is looking to me. I just like how my team puts their trust in me and it just motivates me to do better. I like being in charge in that moment.” Five years since discovering her, Elsasser will leave UNO as one of the storied program’s best pitchers. She’s proven herself against elite competition despite being lightly recruited and not looking the part of a mound master with her lithe frame and diminutive stature. Her long limbs, strong core and compact delivery allow her to average 68 miles an hour on her “go-to” pitch, the drop-ball. She’s hit 70. Her effortless appearing motion, honed over thousands of hours, makes it appear she’s not throwing as hard as she is. Armed with her heater, a change-up and a riseball, plus pin-point control, she has enough stuff to hold her own with the best. “She is a go-right-at-you kind of kid. She’s not a strikeout pitcher, though she’s getting a lot more strike outs this year, but she really just lets batters put the ball in play and lets the defense work behind her,” Scarpello says. “And she’s a great defender as a pitcher.” Last year Elsasser one-hit Big 12 power Oklahoma State and three weeks ago she beat Big 10 heavyweight and in-state rival Nebraska 3-2 in Lincoln. She calls the victory over NU “the greatest moment I’ve ever had.” The win followed UNO coming up short against the Huskers several times and redeemed a 10-0 drubbing at their hands earlier this year that Elsasser blamed on herself. “It means everything to me. I got that win for my dad. That was our goal when I made my commitment to UNO – beat the Huskers. I told myself I’m not going to let them make a fool of me on the mound again.” Per usual, her folks were there to cheer her on and as always she heard her dad’s voice above everyone else. “I could hear him during that game yelling at

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| THE READER |

cover story

me from the stands. I looked up there and I saw him jumping around. It was really emotional.” Scarpello says Elsasser has shown she “can play with the big dogs,” adding, “She could be playing at any of those programs.” Elsasser says she and her teammates are often underestimated and use their underdog status as fuel to prove they belong. “We always hear, ‘Who’s this Omaha team that keeps winning? Who are these people?’ But we know we’re capable of getting it done.” Overturning doubters seems hard-wired in Elsasser. She would have been UNO’s ace as a true freshman if not for two returning All-America pitchers. She made the most of her limited opportunities, going 10-1. Her pitching mates got most of the starts based on experience, not talent. She also struggled with illegal pitches due to a habit of lifting her foot off the mound during her delivery. She corrected the problem over the summer and prior to the following season Scarpello handed her “the torch to carry the program.” Elsasser ran with it to become “our identity” but she first had to make a tough decision. UNO went D-I, initiating a transition period that made it ineligible for the postseason. Scarpello gave her players permission to transfer and she feared Elsasser might move on. “She knew she would not to get to play for championships and that’s what she came here to do,” Scarpello says, “and I knew that bothered her because she wanted to make a mark. We’ve tried in various ways to give her some great opportunities, to challenge her, so she could make her mark and have no regrets she stayed here. Those games against top teams have become a measuring stick for her and for us.” Elsasser’s sure of her legacy as a program builder but she can’t imagine life without softball. “What I’m going to miss the most is the relationships and being in the circle. The field feels like home to me. If I come to practice in a bad mood I always leave in a good mood. These girls are my best friends, we do everything together. We’re just like a big family. It’s kind of unsettling to know I won’t have that type of bond and closeness I’ve been used to every day for four years.” Everyone says she’d make a great coach. “She’s a real student of the game,” says Scarpello, adding, “I’d hire her in a heartbeat.” “Coaching could be my career,” says Elsasser. She’’ll be coaching a younger sister this summer who’s showing great promise as, you guessed it, a pitcher. Clearly, this legacy has legs. UNO plays at 2 and 4 p.m. on Friday, Noon on Saturday and 6 p.m. April 30 at Westside Field at Westbrook. , Read more of Leo Adam Biga’s work at leoadambiga.wordpress.com.


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Follow live reviews from our Tweet Seats performance on April 23 @operaomaha and #oocinderella. Brought to you by First National Bank.

| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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8 DAYS TOPTV “BLACK BOX”

Thursdays, 9 p.m. (ABC)

Dr. Catherine Black (Kelly Reilly) is a world-renowned neuroscientist who specializes in bipolar disorder and who, unbeknown to her colleagues or her boyfriend, suffers from the disease herself. It’s hard to believe she’s kept it secret, given that she often skips her meds with dramatic results. In her manic phases, Dr. Black dresses like a prostitute and has sex with any nearby cabbie or colleague. I counted four instances of porn-grade intercourse in the pilot alone. “Black Box” glamorizes these episodes — indeed, Catherine in crazy mode is the series’ raison d’etre. If that’s not offensive enough, her research involves allowing bipolar patients to hold onto their hallucinations rather than “medicating them into mediocrity.” Here, it’s considered a happy ending when a patient gets to leave a hospital with an imaginary elf. In other words, the series is medically indefensible. The thing is, I’m not a medical critic, but a TV critic. And as TV, “Black Box” is enjoyable nonsense. Reilly is surely in the running for the most sensual neuroscientist of all time, and Vanessa Redgrave does a good job of keeping a straight face as her personal therapist. I don’t know if “Black Box” will go over with the viewing public, but imaginary elves are sure to love it. — Dean Robbins

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T H E R E A D E R ’ S E N T E RTA I N M E N T P I C K S A P R I L 2 4 - 3 0 , 2 014

FRIDAY25

THE BUNNYBRAINS

April 25

BEETHOVEN VARIATIONS AND TRANSFORMATIONS

BLUEBARN Theatre, 614 S. 11th St. Free and open to public, noon - 1 p.m. bluebarn.org 33 Variations, a play by Moisés Kaufman, asks the question, “Why did Beethoven write so many variations and devote so much time and energy to Diabelli’s insignificant theme?” In partnership with the Omaha Chamber Music Society, the BLUEBARN Theatre presents Beethoven Variations and Transformations as a precursor to 33 Variations opening May and the OCMS season. Join host, Hal France and OCMS musicians: Anne Nagosky and Juliet Yoshida on violin, Thomas Kluge on viola and Paul Ledwon on cello; for this noon time informance featuring the music of Ludwig van Beethoven. The group will share insights into the composer’s techniques of variation and musical transformation. Bring your own lunch and prepare to be transported and inspired by Beethoven’s 33 Variations. —William Grennan

SATURDAY26 April 26-27

CAREY HARRISON SPECIAL EVENTS The Bookworm, 8702 Pacific St. and OM Center, 1216 Howard St. 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., $15 and $25 www.bookwormomaha.com omcenterdaily.com

Carey Harrison, award-winning author and dramatist, will be in Omaha for two days with three special events. The first two events will be focused on his novel Justice including a reading and signing April 26 at 1 p.m. located at The Bookworm

| THE READER |

picks

and a discussion with Harrison and Professor of Philosophy at Creighton Dr. Richard White on the same day at 7 p.m in the OM Center. Justice is set in Italy 1946. Miri Gottlieb a woman who has lost both her husband and son to the war has to decide how she can get her revenge. The discussion between Harrison and White is $15 and will look at revenge vs. forgiving the CAREY HARRISON unforgivable, but it will also feature Harrison sharing his experience of his walking pilgrimage to Auschwitz. The final event, a one-man show by Harrison with a reception to follow, takes place April 27 at 7 p.m. in the OM Center and costs $25 to attend. In this performance Harrison takes us to the world he was born into, with his stage and screen actor parents Rex Harrison and Lilli Palmer. The reception following will also feature his wife, Claire Lambe, and her exhibition of portraits will be on display all weekend. You won’t want to miss out on any of these events focused on the remarkable Carey Harrison, his powerful book and his incredible experiences. — Mara Wilson

SUNDAY27 April 27

THE BUNNYBRAINS W/RAKE KASH, VIDEO RANGER AND THE LUPINES

Sweatshop Gallery, 2727 N. 62 St. 8 p.m., $8 www.facebook.com/sweatshopgalleryomaha The Bunnybrains from Connecticut have been around since 1988 and their performance-art comes to Omaha for a show at the Sweatshop Gallery. Their unique sound is a mixture of psychedelic, punk and noise. The Bunnybrains is the type of band where you need to hear them for yourself to understand their distinct style. Joining this original group is Rake Kash from Omaha, an instrumental project of L. Eugene Methe which will match the psychedelic jam of the former band. Video Ranger will only add to this concert, their local band has been tearing through venues all over the Omaha area playing with multiple bands local and out of state, gaining the experience and fans they deserve. The Lupines is the final band for this show. This Omaha garage rock featuring howling guitar sounds released a new album this year. With so much jamming, a mix of Omaha locals and a band that has been playing for more than 20 years you can’t resist this rocking opportunity. — Mara Wilson


| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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coldcream

n When it comes to artistic competitions, it doesn’t get more epic than Joe Basque’s new play The Battle of Battles, now playing at The Shelterbelt Theatre. “The Battle of Battles is a true story set in the renaissance in Florence, Italy at the turn of the 16th century. Florence convinced Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci to paint murals in their government hall to see who the better artist was,” Basque said. Basque got the idea to write the play after he came across a very peculiar passage in a da Vinci biography. The competition was organized by Machiavelli to divert people’s attention away from a lengthy war that Florence had been marred in. After all, who wouldn’t want to see two of the world’s greatest artists, both very different and very brilliant, compete against one another? “You’ve got an older, established famous artist. You’ve got an up and coming young artist who’s trying to take his position and commissions…There’s just so many aspects to these two characters that create so much conflict,” he said. The rivalry was so heated that at one point, da Vinci petitioned and won a motion to put a pair of brass underwear over Michelangelo’s David. With no love lost between the two characters, Basque said that dialogue between the two almost wrote itself. He started work on the piece almost 10 years ago. After researching and finishing a draft, the show was given a staged reading at the Shelterbelt last year, which earned a Theatre Arts Guild nomination for Best Special Event. After the reading success, Shelterbelt requested to do a full run of the show for the current season. Once rehearsal began, Basque made some final tweaks and changes and then let the cast and director Daena Schweiger work their theatrical magic. “I’m not an actor, but I’m also not a believer in making actors get a couple of new pages of script everyday through tech week,” Basque laughed. “I think they should have a script in place that they could start working with quickly.” He spoke of how helpful it was to have the director and cast give ideas and tweaks to script as the rehearsal process went on. “As a writer, I’m looking at this from the overall story,” he said. “The actors’ are looking at it as individual characters... and they will catch things about the story or the character that I don’t really notice, that do need to be corrected. It really is helpful to have that collaboration.” — William Grennan Cold Cream looks at theater in the metro area. Email information to coldcream@thereader.com

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DA V I N C I V S . M I C H E L A N G E LO : S H E LT E R B E LT E X T E N D S I T S H O R I Z O N S BY GORDON SPENCER

S

helterbelt Theatre branches in new directions in its 20th year of growth, continuing to engirdle, foster, and nourish talent with Nebraska roots. Nothing radical will emerge, mind you. The mission remains the same as it always has been, bringing to light new work at its home on California Street. Yet, the latest production, The Battle of Battles, by Omaha’s Joe Basque, ventures into territory rarely explored there before, a historical, costume comedy derived from real events. Thus doth this season continue to flourish. And, on the near horizon, another new work emerges, Abby’s Last Summer by A. P. Andrews, born and raised in Superior, Neb. That’s in July. So are staged play readings in the fresh series Before the Boards. Basque takes on a big and stimulating theme, the nature of artistic creation. He focuses on 16th century giants, Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, and has written a fascinating script full of colorful, interesting, intelligent material about the artists and their work, referring amusingly to famed masterpieces not depicted during the story. Raucous, provocative, comic details fill in the spaces not covered on scholarly pages. His imaginative choice of subject certainly looks like a winning

masterfully decorated hall. The artists hated each other. Insults are hurled. Fights erupt. Frequently. We also see Machiavelli finding clever ways to get both men to agree to enter the contest. And witness Soderini, dismayed at how far are the works from what he had hoped for. Basque comes up with many trenchant, pointed observations about artists’ egos, their working methods, and about patrons’ insensitivity to the true creative process. He also has written quite a few funny lines. Added to the tale is a deliberately comic character nicknamed “Salai” (in Italian “the little unclean one”), likewise drawn from life. Salai was a pupil of Leonardo. Here he’s portrayed as the master’s young lover. Given this and both famed painters’ homosexuality, that issue regularly comes out, especially due to Leonardo’s bitchy jibes about his opponent’s predilections. You could take Salai to be a characteristic servant as often seen in Commedia dell’arte, emerging around the same time as the events in the play. A clever device. Basque adds the amusing element of having Salai talk directly to the audience. Other characters do likewise, mocking the public’s eagerness to passively partake, like Florentines gawking at the contest, even when nothing is happening. Watching paint dry.

The first play scored points off-Broadway, not the only appearance for writers whose works have debuted at Shelterbelt. Others include Ellen Struve, Max Sparber and Beaufield Berry. Thirty year-old Berry is now Shelterbelt’s director of marketing and PR. And the present board of directors consists of her contemporaries. As Berry points out, youth has no bearing on the choice of plays or subject matter. “We always encourage new and unknown playwrights and are open to anyone.” As for possible emerging new directions regarding content, she comments, “We have been crossing over into somewhat ‘raw’ territory but without alienating our core audience, even though we’ve never tried to avoid controversy. We present American theatre as it lives in 2014.” Her play Happy Hour can be heard at a staged reading July 15 directed by Denise Chapman. And afterwards comes The Other Sewing Circle by Omaha’s Marie Amthor due July 28. These are in the free Before the Boards series. Prior to both, starting July 10 , is A.P. Andrews’ Abby in the Summer. This is his debut at Shelterbelt. The script first appeared in a 2010 staged reading at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London. It is one of 10 plays in his interconnected series Nebraska Cycle, all taking place in the

proposition for productions elsewhere. Director Daena Schweiger has superb assistance from Roxanne and Dan Wach who devised remarkably flexible and impressive projections of paintings central to the developments. As for the cast, on opening night, Schweiger had the two main characters going full-bore vocally, perhaps justifying their larger-than- life reputations but in volume which exceeds the needs of the small performing venue. By contrast, two other characters seem almost tame. They are Nicolò Machiavelli and Piero Soderini. Soderini was central to what actually happened. As the head of Florence’s elected government, he came up with the idea of this genuine artistic contest. Machiavelli was a close ally and may have been important to the idea, although that’s not certain. In 1503 and 1504 Leonardo and Michelangelo were commissioned to paint large frescoes celebrating battles in which the forces of Florence were pitted against those of enemies. And to do so, back to back, in the Palazzo Vecchio’s Council Hall. Soderini’s motivation was to attract attention to such famed men celebrating and honoring events whose visualization could stimulate pride and patriotism. Basque also suggests that Machiavelli wanted them to do this to distract the populace from an ongoing, long war with Pisa. The play primarily delves into the contest, focusing on the aggressive hostility that heated up the soon-to-be-

Randy Vest has lots of feisty, believable, memorable dimensions as Michelangelo, getting across his immature volatility. That makes a good contrast to Andy Niess’ successful portrayal of Leonardo as arch and smug, convinced of his own superiority. Noah Diaz plays Salai, going at it rather heavily on opening night. Broad strokes, instead of subtlety. Director Schweiger could still tone that down, along with tempering the yelling. Paul Schneider’s Soderini comes across as convincingly bewildered and innocent, as if intimidated by wife Argentina Malaspina, capably represented by Sara Planck. As for Mike Palmreuter’s take on Machiavelli, he seems no more than a vague sketch, a far cry from the man’s reputation as a wily intellectual. You might wonder why Basque chose to write this. You won’t learn that from the program book. Not an art student nor a historian, but a lawyer, he describes reading about Leonardo and coming across a few intriguing sentences about these events. He researched elsewhere. “It seemed like an irresistible story,” he explains. You also won’t learn about Basque from the program book. This is his third play at Shelterbelt, preceded by Ping Pong Diplomacy from 2005, likewise spun off from history. And Basque touched on homosexuality before in 2006’s Defending Marriage.

fictional town of Jaconda. He describes this as a coming-ofage experience relevant to Middle America, where “people try to find their places in the world” and about examining and rebuilding cultural and political bridges, “burned through current political positioning and pandering.” Artistic Director Beth Thompson will stage it. “As a small town Nebraska girl myself,” she points out, “I relate to Abby, and I’m interested to see how ‘big city folk’ react. The journey is similar in all of us, but where you come from defines how well you are prepared to deal with it.” Meanwhile, there is also the question of the future Shelterbelt season. Thompson has thorough plans for that, but details are yet to be fully revealed. As of this writing, all the new plays have been chosen. What remains is finalization to fix everything in the firmament. Thompson does say that the scripts deal with “fidelity, abandonment, HIV, cancer, social anxiety, drug abuse. And that’s just skimming the surface.” She adds, “There is a survival element as we enter into this new phase. We have been around for over 20 years, and in some ways I think that we are just getting started.” ,

| THE READER |

theater

The Battle of Battles continues through May 11 at 3225 California St. Thurs.-Sat. 8 p.m. Tickets: $10-$15. More info: www.shelterbelt.org


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| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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overtheedge LIFESTYLE COLUMN BY TIM MCMAHAN

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APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

| THE READER |

over the edge

he decision to buy a MINI had been made shortly after the automaker announced it would release a new convertible the following year — the first model year being 2005. I’ve always been an early adopter of technology. Despite countless warnings from friends and family to at least wait until the second year of production, I’d made up my mind. There are three things I look for when buying a new car: 1) I have to fit comfortably inside it; 2) It has to be a convertible or at least have a sunroof, and 3 (and most important) it has to be somewhat obscure. Not so much rare as hard to find or rarely seen on the street. The term for the generic fleet of Hondas, Nissans and Toyotas is “belly button cars” — everybody has one. The problem with No. 3 is that it often requires leaving Omaha to make the purchase. Such was the case with MINI, which didn’t have a dealership in Omaha back in 2005. The closest was in Merriam, Kansas, just south of Kansas City, which meant I would be buying the car sight unseen — and unsat in. I didn’t know anyone who drove a MINI Cooper. What if I was buying a car I couldn’t get into, or once squeezed inside, felt like a contortionist as I had when I drove my Porsche Boxster? Everything I’d read about MINI Coopers suggested they were roomy — downright boxy — and a guy my size would have no problem driving one. By then I suppose it didn’t matter what the writer-ups said. I had the bug. I’d made up my mind. There was no stopping me. I ordered my MINI Cooper online one evening in the fall of 2004. Even back then, MINI had a clever website where you could “build your own” car, allowing you to select the color, style and configuration from the ground up (Now every car maker has a build-your-own online app). I clicked through the colors and selected orange with black “racing stripes,” added the full chrome treatment, chose the sporty “S” package with automatic transmission so my wife could drive it if she wanted to. The final tally was just over $27,000. With a click of my mouse, the order was placed. The following day someone from the Kansas MINI dealership called to confirm my order, discuss payment options and let me know my car wouldn’t arrive until the following spring. I sloshed through the long, cold, dark winter in my POS Geo Tracker (my “winter car”) dreaming of my shiny new convertible. The wait felt endless. Then came March and the phone call that my car had finally arrived. Teresa drove me to Kansas City the following weekend, where we struggled to find the dealership, eventually discovering the odd, modern-shaped

building situated just off I-35, the one with all the MINIs parked outside like brightly colored Easter eggs. Once inside I got the full “we’ve-been-expecting-you” treatment. I was escorted through the showroom directly to the interior garage where my MINI sat waiting for my arrival. It looked like a brand new toy right out of the box, like a piece of orange candy, its chrome gleaming under the bright shop lights. Every detail was just as I imagined, right down to the dual exhaust pipes, which I had been told were fashioned after beer cans. The moment of truth was finally at hand — would I be able to fit inside? Keep in mind, at this point it wouldn’t have mattered. I’d already bought the car. I’d signed my name on all the papers, along with a sizable check, and had been handed the keys. If my head pushed up against the canvas roof like a circus pole or my knees had to be positioned right below my chin, well, I’d have to live with it for at least a few years. I opened the door, adjusted the seat, stepped in and leaned back. Compared to the Boxster, the inside of the MINI felt like the interior of a Lincoln Town Car. There was so much leg room, in fact, that I had to move the seat up to comfortably drive. Needless to say, I was relieved. The dealer walked me through all the features, showed me how to open the top, how to plug in my iPod (at that time, another unique MINI feature), and then told me if I needed service to merely call and the dealership would come and get my car in Omaha and drive it back, “but that won’t be for awhile since we recommend oil changes only every 10,000 miles,” she said. “You’ll find owning a MINI to be a trouble-free experience.” Those words would eventually haunt me. But I wasn’t thinking about that then. Instead, the glass-and-metal overhead door rolled open and I drove my new MINI into the bright spring afternoon, thinking it was the coolest car I’d ever seen. And I wasn’t alone, because whenever I drove my MINI I got comments, lots of them. People pointed and smiled. Kids rushed across their lawns to get a better look and to wave at the guy (presumably a circus clown) behind the wheel. Every time I rolled through a drive-thru the person handing me my bag of grease would say, “I love your car” or “Good night to have the top down.” But most comforting of all is what happened whenever I crossed paths with another then-rare MINI Cooper driver. It was an unspoken rule of the road to wave at each other and acknowledge the special bond we shared. It was like a special club. Little did I know it would turn into a similar club whose members included Edsel, Fiat and Yugo drivers. The first three years with my MINI — the “warranty years”— were pure bliss. After that, the problems started. ,

OVER THE EDGE is a weekly column by Reader senior contributing writer Tim McMahan focused on culture, society, music, the media and the arts. Email Tim at tim.mcmahan@gmail.com. And be sure to check out his blog at Lazy-i.com


backbeat

n The summer festival and concert season lineups have poured in the last few weeks, highlighted locally by the announcement of Maha Music Festival’s bill. Death Cab For Cutie, the mellow Pacific Northwest indie pop rock act, headlines the lineup for the sixth annual event. Folky indie strummers the Head and the Heart and upbeat Southern California act Local Natives are also featured prominently on Maha’s lineup. The Both, a new collaboration between Aimee Mann and Ted Leo will also play, as will Missouri punk act Radkey, Iowa’s the Envy Corps and indie hip hop act Doomtree. Matt Whipkey, M34N STR33T and Twinsmith will be featured on Maha’s local stage. The event is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 16 at Aksarben Village’s Stinson Park. Tickets are now on sale for $50. n Stir Cove at Harrah’s Casino in Council Bluffs has also added a little modern muscle to its initial lineup with the recent additions of shows by the Arctic Monkeys, Fitz & the Tantrums and Foster the People. Arctic Monkeys have exploded recently on the strength of their fourth album, 2013’s A.M., so expect their Wednesday, July 30, show to be a sell out. Fitz & the Tantrums, who play Sunday, July 27, and Foster the People, playing Tuesday, Aug. 5, have built their own fan bases thanks to several successful radio singles. It adds to a Stir lineup that initially went heavy on ’90s nostalgia. n Several surrounding festivals unveiled lineups that offer up familiar sounds to Omaha concertgoers. The two-day Des Moines’ 80/35 Festival starts Friday, July 4, with headliner Conor Oberst and Dawes, a bill that will play Sokol Auditorium, 2234 S. 13th St., Wednesday, June 4. Other announced acts include regular Omaha visitors Best Coast and Dr. Dog. Saturday in the Park up in Sioux City boasts a slightly stronger and more varied lineup on Saturday, July 5. They snagged the Avett Brothers and Bonnie Raitt for their free, daylong event. — Chris Aponick The Reader’s Backbeat column seeks to cover the local music scene from all corners of the sound spectrum. Email it to backbeat@thereader.com.

FITZ & THE TANTRUMS

BY MARA WILSON

DAV I D MURPHY RELEASES NEW CD

D

avid Murphy, Omaha singer, songwriter, producer, pianist and author extraordinaire with five books and one solo CD, has released a second album that is sure to tug at your heart strings and allow you to dive into his memories and perhaps your own. Audiences will get a chance to check out Murphy’s new album, My Fraudulent Memoirs, at his CD release party Thursday, May 1, at PS Collective, 6056 Maple St., in Benson from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Murphy will be joined by his band “The Fraudulenteers,” featuring Mark Haar, Ron Cooley, Mike Deluca and Camille Metoyer Moten, among others. My Fraudulent Memoirs took Murphy eight years to complete. With this long of a process, he wasn’t solely focused on the album. “Well, I was busy doing a lot of other stuff too during those years. I wrote five books and produced, arranged and recorded three CDs for other people. All the while my next CD was percolating in my head and when I had chances, I’d work on it.” Murphy’s first CD, Shining in a Temporary Sun, was released in 1998, he reflects on his past, but he is always looking towards the next project, “My next album should be out in a couple of years. Meanwhile, this spring, I’ll be working on putting together Camille Metoyer Moten’s next CD.” Influenced by songwriters Jimmy Webb, Randy Newman, Burt Bacharach, Steely Dan, Joni Mitchel and more,

Murphy was shaped by what he absorbed and studied from these great writers along with his experience of living in Los Angeles for 25 years. He used all of this to guide him while working on this CD. My Fraudulent Memoirs is a very unique album in the way the lyrics are presented. The songs begin and you think you’re listening to a classical piece, but Murphy’s voice carries its way in and through this unison the stories are told. Murphy was intentional with this, “In many ways, this is a very retro album, with multiple genres represented. It’s not about image or what’s current or flashy aspects – it’s about songs and storytelling and getting out of the way of the tune.” Murphy took his time developing this style and it shows from the time you listen to the first song throughout the whole album. “Here’s my goal each time: the lyrics, melodies and harmonies have to be part of the package and have to serve the songs’ storylines.” Murphy believed real instruments needed to be used in order to capture the best emotion behind each tune. Through the use of local and distance recording Murphy was able receive the help he needed for this album. “I can record a piano part in my home, tell a musician what the metronome marking is and then send that player an mp3 of the tune. He or she can then pop it into their recording system, play the song down and send me back their part or parts once they’re done. It’s amazing!” Mark Haar, bass

music

player on “Violet is the New Blue,” and friend of Murphy was just one of many musicians to contribute to this album. Murphy said this allows each song to have its own vibe and distinct energy. “There is no such thing as something too personal the more personal it gets the more universal it is,” Murphy said in a radio interview with Dave Wingert. One song in particular, “Watching the Little Planes Land” and others on this album were gathered from Murphy’s past. This song taught him that there are no stories too personal. “That tune grew out of my childhood experience and sometimes looking back can be emotional, but that’s all good, right? The deeper the feeling, the more universal it is. A tune that I thought folks wouldn’t relate to has become one of my most popular songs.” “Memoirs is different to me because I feel like my skills are better than they’ve ever been and I think the album reflects that.” , Check out www.cdbaby.com/cd/davidpmurphy2 or davidpmurphy.com and see if Murphy’s Memoirs is the type of music to get your groove going or your memories rolling. Or check out his CD release party next Friday at PS Collective or hear Murphy perform at the Jackson Street Tavern in the Old Market where he plays the piano Friday and Saturday nights.

| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

15


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This project is supported in part by Region 6 Behavioral Healthcare through funding provided by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services/Tobacco Free Nebraska program as a result of the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement.

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APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

| THE READER |


livemusiccalendar

SEND CALENDAR INFORMATION — including addresses, dates, times, costs and phone numbers — to The Reader’s calendar editor. Mail to or drop off information at P.O. Box 7360 Omaha, NE 68107; email to listings@thereader.com; fax to (402) 341.6967. Deadline is 5 p.m. the Thursday prior to issue date.

THURSDAY 24

JIM SUHLER AND MONKEY BEAT, 6 pm, 21st Saloon, $10. DURTY THURSDAY W/E BROWN, (DJ/Electronic) 9 pm, Bar 415, FREE. GRUMBLE W/FISH HOUSE PUNCH, A LIFE LED LUCID, ADAM PETERSON AND HANAGRACE, 9:30 pm, Barley Street Tavern, $5. DAN TEDESCO W/MIKE SEMRAD, (Rock) 8 pm, Bourbon Theater, $6 ADV. NEW MOON SONGWRITERS NIGHT, (Folk/SingerSongwriter) 7 pm, Crescent Moon Coffee, FREE. BEAVER DAMAGE, DOMESTICA AND KUSH, 9 pm, Knickerbockers, Contact venue for charge. SMOOTH JAZZ THURSDAYS AT THE OZONE LOUNGE W/ TODD CAMPBELL, (Jazz) 6:30 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, FREE. THE SWAMP BLUES JAM NIGHT, (Blues) 7:30 pm, Rusty Nail Pub, Contact venue for charge. OMAHA GUITAR TRIO W/JOHN LARSEN, 7:30 pm, Slowdown, $5. DARREN KEEN, TEETAH, RUBY BLOCK AND ROGUE MOON, 9 pm, Sweatshop Gallery, $5. JON WAYNE AND THE PAIN, 9 pm, The Hive Lounge, Contact venue for charge. REGGAE NIGHT, (Reggae/Island) 8 pm, The Hive Lounge, Contact venue for charge. ACOUSTIC NIGHT, 8 pm, The Tavern, FREE. CHRIS SAUB, 8 pm, The Tavern, Contact venue for charge. ACOUSTIC MUSIC THURSDAYS!, 8 pm, Two Fine Irishmen, Contact venue for charge. BACKPACK IN BLACK, 9 pm, Vega, Contact venue for charge. FILIBUSTA, (DJ/Electronic) 7 pm, Venue 51, Contact venue for charge. WAXAHATCHEE WITH CARBONLEAK AND MANIC PIXIE DREAM GIRLS, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $10 ADV | $12 DOS. ACOUSTIC JAM, 1 pm, Western Historic Trails Center, FREE. SIDEWALK CHALK W/JOSH HOYER AND THE SHADOWBOXERS, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $12 ADV | $15 DOS. THE WILDWOODS, 6 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact venue for charge.

FRIDAY 25

3D IN YOUR FACE, (Rock) 9 pm, 21st Saloon, $5. ON THE FRITZ, 9 pm, Arena Bar & Grill, FREE. MYTH & LUCAS KRANCE, 9 pm, Bar 415, $5. DANIEL AND THE LION W/TRIBES OF SATURN AND MOSES PREY, 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, $5. TINY MOVING PARTS W/GATES, FRAMEWORKS AND LIGHTHOUSES, 7 pm, Bourbon Theater, $6 ADV | $8 DOS. CITY LIMIT BAND, (Country) 8 pm, Coyote Willy’s, $5. THE BRITS, 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact venue for charge. TOMMY SWANSON, (Cover Band) 7 pm, Havana Garage, FREE.

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APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

KARAOKE THEATRE, 9 pm, House Of Loom, FREE. FRANKIE KNUCKLES GODFATHER OF HOUSE TRIBUTE, 8 pm, House Of Loom, Contact venue for charge. CALLOW, NORTHWEST PASSAGE, THE EPITOMES AND SUNLEAF, 9 pm, Knickerbockers, Contact venue for charge. HIDDEN AGENDA, 8 pm, Loose Moose, FREE. MATT COX BAND, BRAD HOSHAW AND THE ELECTROLINERS, 8 pm, McKenna’s Booze, Blues & BBQ, Contact venue for charge. NANAHARA WITH DIRTY TALKER AND POST-VERSE, 9:30 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5. ECKOPHONIC, (Cover Band) 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Contact venue for charge. KARAOKE, 9:30 pm, Rusty Nail Pub, Contact venue for charge. EARLYTOWN, THE WILLARDS BAND AND RAQUEL TELFER, 8 pm, Shamrock’s Pub & Grill, Contact venue for charge. M34N STR33T ALBUM RELEASE SHOW BOTH W/BOREALIS, SEAN PRATT & THE SWEATS AND DJ NATER, 8 pm, Slowdown, $7 ADV | $10 DOS. SOARING WINGS FRIDAY NIGHT MUSIC W/JEFF TOMES, 7 pm, Soaring Wings Vineyard, FREE. TAKE THE STAGE KARAOKE, 8 pm, Stir Live & Loud, Contact venue for charge. LIVE ACOUSTIC MUSIC W/PAUL HART, 7:30 pm, Stories Coffeehouse, Contact venue for charge. DESERT NOISES W/WINTER SOUNDS AND FREAKABOUT!, 9 pm, Vega, 21+ $8 | 18-20 $10 . MIDWEST ELITE CONCERTS PRESENTS: BREAK MAIDEN CD RELEASE WITH WE BE LIONS, THE MATADOR AND DIRTFEDD, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $8. KARAOKE, 9 pm, West Lanes Bowling Blue Magoo Lounge, Contact venue for charge. TAMI HALL, (Country) 9 pm, Whiskey Roadhouse (Horseshoe Casino), Contact venue for charge. LIL’ SLIM, 5 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact venue for charge. THE BOTTLETOPS, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $5. DON’T STOP PLEASE, 8 pm, The Hive Lounge, Contact venue for charge.

SATURDAY 26

FIND YOUR VOICE: BEGINNER BLUES, (Blues/Class) 2 pm, 402 Arts Collective/ Aromas Coffeehouse, FREE. SHUR THING, 8 pm, Ameristar Casino, FREE. PALINDROSEFF, (DJ/Electronic) 9 pm, Bar 415, $5. LADY SHOW II: A VERY BECKSTRAORDINARY PRODUCTION, (Comedy/Poetry) 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, $5. BUNNYBRAINS W/THUNDERSANDWICH, 5 pm, Bourbon Theater, 21+ $5 | 18-20 $7. KRIS LAGER BAND W/DON’T STOP PLEASE, 8 pm, Bourbon Theater, $7 ADV | $8 DOS. TAMI HALL, (Country) 8 pm, Coyote Willy’s, $5. BLAZIN’ PIANOS W/KEITH ALLEN AND MATT NEUMAYER, (Cover Band) 9 pm, DJ’s Dugout West, Contact venue for charge.

| THE READER |

music listings

DICEY RILEY, 8 pm, Dubliner Pub, $3. KARAOKE, 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact venue for cover charge. LUKE POLIPNICK “MODERN JAZZ”, (Jazz) 8 pm, Harney Street Tavern, Contact venue for charge. HONEYBOY TURNER BAND, (Blues) 9 pm, Havana Garage, FREE. GHOST OF RUIN, VALISKA, ARCHITECT OR ARSONIST, DEAD ECHOES, SKUMMER AND SINNFIXX, 9 pm, Knickerbockers, Contact venue for charge. AVARICIOUS, 8 pm, Loose Moose, FREE. SOMO W/KREAYSHAWN, FAR EAST MOVEMENT AND TY$, 7 pm, MidAmerica Center, Tickets start at $34. SIMON JOYNER & THE GHOSTS WITH THE SUBTROPICS, 9:30 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5. ENVY, 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Contact venue for charge. HI-FI HANGOVER, 8 pm, Parliament Pub Downtown, Contact venue for charge. CHRIS SAUB W/THE 402, 9:30 pm, Rich Bar & Lounge, Contact venue for charge. ALTER EGO, 8 pm, Shamrock’s Pub & Grill, Contact venue for charge. CLEAR THE DAY CD RELEASE SHOW W/THE BRIGADIERS AND MORSE CODE, 8 pm, Slowdown, $7. LIVE MUSIC W/MARK IRVIN, 7:30 pm, Stories Coffeehouse, Contact venue for charge. THE UNDISCO KIDS, 8 pm, The Hive Lounge, Contact venue for charge. BLU SIMON, 9 pm, Two Fine Irishmen, Contact venue for charge. BLUE MARTIAN TRIBE WITH PANCHO AND THE CONTRABAND AND JOHN LARSON, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $7. DOWN TO HERE, (Rock) 9 pm, Whiskey Roadhouse (Horseshoe Casino), Contact venue for charge. BRAD VICKERS AND THE VESTAPOLTANS, 6 pm, Zoo Bar, $8. A FEROCIOUS JUNGLE CAT W/TJ SADLER, 9 pm, Zoo Bar, $6.

SUNDAY 27

LESSON STUDIOS SPRING RECITAL, 2 pm, 402 Arts Collective/ Aromas Coffeehouse, FREE. ZACH RYAN AND THE RENEGADES W/MEADOW RAVE AND SONS OF THE POOR, 8 pm, Duffy’s Tavern, $5. SALSA SUNDAY W/ LATIN MADNESS, 7 pm, House Of Loom, $5. O’LEAVER’S OPEN MIC NIGHT, 9 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, FREE. SOARING WINGS VINEYARD SUNDAY MUSIC WITH RICK SPURGIN, 2 pm, Soaring Wings Vineyard, FREE. THE BUNNYBRAINS W/RAKE KASH, VIDEO RANGER AND THE LUPINES, 8 pm, Sweatshop Gallery, $8. SOUL NIGHT, 8 pm, The Sydney, Contact venue for charge. ACCIDENTAL THERAPY PRESENTS HOT VICTORY W/ WORRIED MOTHERS, DROMEZ AND PLACK BLAGUE DJ SETS, 8 pm, Vega, 21+ $8 | 18-20 $10.

SIMON JOYNER & THE GHOSTS WITH THE SUBTROPICS, 9:30 pm, O’Leaver’s Pub, $5.

ACADEMY OF ROCK, (Rock) 5 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact venue for charge.

MONDAY 28

OPEN MIC NIGHT, 6 pm, 402 Arts Collective/ Aromas Coffeehouse, FREE. OPEN MIC & SONGWRITER SHOWCASE, (Folk/SingerSongwriter) 9 pm, Barley Street Tavern, FREE. FIRST CUT INDUSTRY NIGHT W/ DJ DRDRIGGS, (DJ/ Electronic) 9 pm, House Of Loom, FREE. MIKE GURCIULLO AND HIS LAS VEGAS BAND, (Cover Band) 7 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Contact venue for charge. MAX PAIN & THE GROOVIES W/SNAKE ISLAND! AND POWERS, 9 pm, Vega, 21+ $5 | 18-20 $7. WAITING ROOM MUSIC QUIZ, 8 pm, Waiting Room, FREE. THE BLACK LIPS WITH NATURAL CHILD, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $13. ZOO BAR HOUSE BAND, 7 pm, Zoo Bar, $3. PIANO HOUR W/ EMILY BASS, 5 pm, Zoo Bar, Contact venue for charge.

TUESDAY 29

VIC NASTY, 8 pm, Bar 415, FREE. OPEN MIC NIGHT, 9:30 pm, Dubliner Pub, FREE. JESSICA ERRETT AND TARA VAUGHAN, 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Contact venue for charge. BEN ZINN, JOHN KLEMMENSEN AND MATT COX, 9 pm, Pizza Shoppe Collective, Contact venue for charge. $2 TUESDAYS FEATURING DWIGHT SMITH AND JULIA LUCILLE, 9 pm, Vega, Contact venue for charge. OPEN MIC HOSTED BY DAVE YOBLE, 8 pm, Venue 51, FREE. ANGEL OLSEN WITH PROMISED LAND SOUND, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $10. JAZZOCRACY, (Jazz) 6 pm, Zoo Bar, FREE. DJ RELIC SOUL PARTY, 8 pm, Zoo Bar, FREE.

WEDNESDAY 30

JAB, 9 pm, Bar 415, FREE. THE BOURBON THEATRE & RAD KADILLAC PRESENT KOAN SOUND AND MINNESOTA, 8 pm, Bourbon Theater, $15 ADV. DICEY RILEYS, 7 pm, Brazen Head Irish Pub, FREE. CHRIS SHELTON, (Rock) 8 pm, Firewater Grille, Contact venue for charge. “WHIPKEY WEDNESDAY” MATT’S BIRTHDAY BASH, 8 pm, Harney Street Tavern, Contact venue for charge. THE PERSUADERS, 8 pm, OzoNE Lounge at Anthony’s Steakhouse, Contact venue for charge. 1% PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS JAKE BELLOWS W/MCCARTHY TRENCHING, 8 pm, Slowdown, $8. BUDS AND SUDS TOUR: DEVIN THE DUDE/BERNER WITH POTLUCK, COOL NUTZ, J. HORNAY, & BLAZE 1, 9 pm, Waiting Room, $17. JASON ELMORE, 6 pm, Zoo Bar, $8.


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FOSTER THE PEOPLE AUGUST 5

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WITH SPECIAL GUEST TOAD THE WET SPROCKET JULY 26

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PAT BENATAR AND NEIL GIRALDO

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Schedule and artist subject to change. Must be 21 or older to gamble. Know When To Stop Before You Start.® Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS-OFF (In Iowa) or 1-800-522-4700 (National). ©2014, Caesars License Company, LLC.

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| THE READER |

4/22/14 8:33 AM

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

19


newsoftheweird

T H E WO R L D G O N E F R E A K Y B Y C H U C K S H E P H E R D W I T H I L LU S T R AT I O N S B Y T O M B R I S C O E

Down on the Deer Farm

T

he billion-dollar deer-farming industry in America produces generations of bucks growing progressively larger racks of antlers mainly for eventual bragging rights by the socalled “hunters” who will pay large fees to kill them in fenced-in fields just so they can hang the grotesque antlers in their dens. Even before the farm-raised deer are stalked (reported The Indianapolis Star in March in its multipart investigation), bucks’ necks habitually slump from the weight of the freakish antlers. Most states allow such “hunting,” and in some, the activity is lightly regulated, lacking the safety rules and morehumane conditions required by open-forest hunting laws and agriculture protocols. The Indianapolis Star also highlighted several captive-deer diseases that doctors still worry might jump species to humans (as “mad cow” disease did).

Recurring Themes News of the Weird has several times chronicled the sad saga of India’s holy but severely polluted Ganges River, on which millions of Hindus are dependent -through hands-on worship -- for worldly success and for salvation. Now, recent reports reveal that the secondholiest river, the Yamuna, is suffering the same fate even though the government has invested nearly $1 billion in programs to clean it up. Currently, for example, more than 400 million gallons of untreated sewage, plus various industrial chemicals, enter the river from Delhi, but still, motivated worshippers come to “bathe” for glory. Stories That Never Get Old Dayton, Ohio, bus driver Rickey Wagoner, 49, survived a three-bullet shooting in February that, police

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| THE READER |

weird news

said, was probably a gang initiation that randomly targeted him as he worked on his bus’s engine. A police sergeant told the Dayton Daily News that Wagoner “should probably not be here” and survived the attack only because two of the bullets were blocked by a copy of “The Message” (a contemporary version of the Bible) in Wagoner’s shirt pocket. -- The most recent “monument” offered by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals would be its proposed 10-foot tombstone along U.S. 129 in Gainesville, Ga., to honor the “several” chickens that were killed when a truck overturned in January. No humans were hurt in the collision, and had the chickens survived, they would have shortly been slaughtered. (The Georgia Department of Transportation rejected the proposal.) -- Allowing dogs as “witnesses” in court cases in France has become “something of a recent trend,” reported the Paris edition of the European news site The Local in April. A 9-year-old Labrador retriever (Tango) took the witness stand in the city of Tours so the judge could observe how he reacted to the defendant, on trial for killing the dog’s owner. (For due process of law, a second dog, Norman, took the stand later, as a “control group.”) Ultimately, the judge said he learned nothing from the dogs and dismissed them. -- “Zero Tolerance”: Yet another questionable school suspension was handed down in March, in Virginia Beach, Va., when the sixth-grader who had prevented a classmate from intentionally harming himself was punished for her altruism. Adrionna Harris had convinced a boy to hand over the razor blade he was threatening himself with, and she immediately discarded it. According to the principal, that transaction meant Harris “pos-


COPYRIGHT 2014 CHUCK SHEPHERD. Visit Chuck Shepherd daily at NewsoftheWeird. blogspot.com or NewsoftheWeird.com. Send Weird News to WeirdNewsTips@yahoo.com or P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, FL 33679. Illustrations by Tom Briscoe (smallworldcomics.com).

sessed” a “dangerous weapon,” albeit for a brief time, and she was suspended for 10 days, according to school policy. (After WAVY-TV’s “On Your Side” reporters got involved, the school relented, and Harris returned to class.) -- “Arranged” Bride Fights Back: Ms. Fatima Mangre, 8, was granted a divorce from her husband, Arjun Bakridi, 14, in India’s Uttar Pradesh state in November, becoming the youngest divorcee in the country’s recorded history. Bakridi, then age 10, had married Mangre, then age 4, but his father promised that the couple would not cohabit until she turned 18. When Bakridi tried to move up the date, Mangre’s dad filed divorce papers for his daughter. The legal age for marriage in the state is 18, but a United Nations agency said the law is still widely ignored. -- Not an Urban Legend: (1) A county official in Portland, Ore., said his office gets “20 to 30 calls” about rats in toilets every year, like the one Daniel Powers reported in March when he spotted the “little guy with beady eyes” looking up at him. (2) The problem is more severe in India, where an emergency crew rushed to the Mumbai-area home of Vipul Desai in February to remove a 6-foot-long cobra from the toilet (but not before it “repeatedly” popped its head out of the commode, terrorizing Desai’s wife and daughter). A team from a wildlife rescue association flooded the toilet, grabbed the snake and released it in the forest. -- People sometimes stage ruses to avoid unpleasant tasks, such as the student who calls in a bomb threat when he’s unprepared for an exam, but Dwayne Yeager’s motivation was simply laziness. Yeager, 31, called police in Brandon, Fla., in March, reporting a “burglary” at his home, but after questioning, officers charged him with making up the “crime” just so he could stay home from work that day. (Coincidentally, in Kittery, Maine, three days earlier, the U.S. Navy formally decommissioned its nuclear submarine USS Miami, which had suffered irreparable fire damage in 2012

caused by a shipyard worker. The worker started what he wrongly believed would be a small blaze -- so that he could get off work for the day -- a decision now costing him 17 years in federal prison.) -- In December, at a Home Depot in Banks County, Ga., yet another prankster put glue on a restroom toilet seat, trapping an unwary shopper seeking to relieve herself. Twelve days after the incident, the victim told WSB-TV that she was still in pain. Paramedics had unstuck her with a liberal application of WD-40, but she believes an emergency room would have been more appropriate.

Updates Among the $43 million worth of “renovations” that the former German “Bishop of Bling,” Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst, ordered spent on his home and office before he was forcibly retired by Pope Francis in March: a 6-foot-deep fish tank filled with Koi carp, costing $300,000; a $917,000 garden (the “Garden of Silence”); solid-bronze window frames all around ($2.38 million); and LED lights built into floors, walls, steps, window frames and handrails ($894,000). One expense did prove too extravagant for the bishop, according to The Washington Post: employees. (He had reduced his staff during his tenure.) -- The news site MedPageToday.com is keeping tabs on the eventual unveiling of new, obscure, minutely detailed billing codes for doctors to report diagnoses and treatments to insurance companies, and among the latest finds ready to be part of the medical landscape are separate codes for injuries occurring from a “balloon collision” or during “knitting and crocheting” or for injuries during “gardening and landscaping” (though not merely caused by “digging, shoveling and raking,” which seems to require a different code). Distinct codes are necessary if an injury occurred at an opera house or if the patient is injured by walking into a lamppost (with separate codes for the first such lamppost collision and for repeat collisions). ,

weird news

| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

21


cuttingroom

TRANSCENDENCE IS CLEVER, NOT BRILLIANT B Y R YA N S Y R E K

D

Film Streams at the Ruth Sokolof Theater 14th & Mike Fahey Street (formerly Webster Street)

ear cast and crew of Transcendence, It sucks, but this happens sometimes. You’ve made a perfectly fine (albeit unremarkable) movie, and the critics, both professionals and those deputized by social media, have decided to work you over like you owe them money. It should take human rights violations for a film to score below Need for Speed on this year’s Rotten Tomatoes’ “freshness” scale. Oh, was that rubbing it in? Sorry. Here’s what happened: You know how

The Borg, even if Freeman is no Jean-Luc Picard. Note to self: Start fan-fiction in which Freeman is Jean-Luc Picard. Part of the collective rage-stroke about your passable movie is people thought their nostalgic version of Depp had returned. Honestly, he was never that great, only capable of being whimsically odd or totally boring. Sans his typical caked-on makeup and Tim Burton influence, Depp completely shut down all charisma. It was hard to tell when Will looked lifeless because he was CGI and when he looked lifeless because Depp may actually have died inside. Hey, what was with the decision to have Hall weepy for

you have that friend who is pretty good at trivia but thinks that means he’s Albert Einstein’s equal? No! I’m not saying your film is pseudointellectual! It’s, you know, kinda clever in parts… It’s just that director Wally Pfister clearly thought he was blowing our minds with nuanced existential evolutionary questions when this was just The Borg from “Star Trek: The Next Generation” meets Tron. You don’t see the comparison? Artificial-intelligence scientist Will Caster (Johnny Depp) gets fatally wounded, and his wife, Evelyn (Rebecca Hall), and best friend, Max (Paul Bettany), insert his mind into a computer. Then, weird nanotechnology that feels like magical mumbo jumbo allows Will to “network” other living human beings into one “collective.” Thus, a group of terrorists led by Bree (Kate Mara) and a scientist working with the government, Joseph (Morgan Freeman), try to stop robo-Will. You have to see the similarity to

two hours? Seriously, there’s a drought in California! If she can produce that much eye liquid, you should really collect it. Bettany was fine, but boy did you really waste Mara and Freeman. The latter may sleepwalk through performances for paychecks these days, but Mara is hungry, even in her wasted role here. I was rooting for you right up until the final act. There was something cool about having the audience side with terrorists and fear our own intellectual progress until you decided to, quite literally, water that down. At its best, Transcendence could have been the cyberpunk of William Gibson or the speculative fiction of Philip K Dick. Instead, it was like listening to someone who read Gibson and Dick try to seem smart by retelling their books to you. Still, y’all don’t deserve the piñata treatment you’re receiving, not when we live in a world that will soon have three Expendables movies. In short, feel better guys! At least one critic thinks you’re wonderfully average!

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram: @filmstreams

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APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

—Ryan Syrek Cutting Room provides breaking local and national movie news … complete with added sarcasm. Send any relevant information to film@thereader.com. Check out Ryan on Movieha!, a weekly half-hour movie podcast (movieha. libsyn.com/rss), catch him on the radio on CD 105.9 (cd1059.com) on Fridays at around 7:30 a.m. and on KVNO 90.7 (KVNO.org) at 8:30 a.m. on Fridays and follow him on Twitter (twitter.com/thereaderfilm).

First-Run Films

Special Screening

Forever Young Supported by Lincoln Financial Foundation.

Under the Skin First-Run (R)

Dir. John Sayles. Monday, April 28, 6:30 pm Followed by panel discussion! Presented with Omaha Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO.

Chaplin Shorts!: Program One

Special Screening

The Met: Live in HD

Dir. Jonathan Glazer. Through Thursday, May 8

An alien who looks an awful lot like Scarlett Johansson trolls Glasgow for male victims. Finding Vivian Maier First-Run

More info & showtimes 402.933.0259 · filmstreams.org

GRADE = C

■ Ten years ago, our world was changed forever, and Aksarben Cinema hasn’t forgotten. A decade ago, everything we knew about social interaction, relationships and linguistics was rendered irrelevant by a singular cultural moment. Yes, folks, Mean Girls turns 10 this year, and Wednesday, April 30, Aksarben Cinema is gonna party like Regina George just got hit by that bus. From 5:30 p.m. until the movie starts at 7 p.m., local businesses will have pop-up shops to check out, including Luv Bird, Statement, Simply Pure Salon & Spa, Body Masters, Denim Saloon, White Glove Perfection and Lark a Blow Dry Studio. Tickets are a mere 5 bucks. To those of you who haven’t given up on making “fetch” happen: Enjoy! ■ If you’re like me, not a day goes by that you don’t find yourself discussing the modern implications of the visionary French New Wave director Jacques Demy. Okay, so maybe we run in different circles, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t head to Film Streams to check out the seven-film series of his work beginning Friday, May 16. I mean, you can’t tell me that you don’t want to see movies with titles like A Slightly Pregnant Man and Donkey Skin! And to think, those were ideas Demy had decades before the internet made them into gross reality! ■ I present to you the single sentence that proves we, as a species, have run out of ideas. We have reached our apex as a people and should begin systematically deciding which animals should inherit the planet next. My vote is for the Slow Lorises. What statement should earn our collective extinction? “They’re making Mrs. Doubtfire 2.” Shut it down, humans, we had a good run.

Dir. John Maloof & Charlie Siskel. Starts Friday, April 25

A documentary on an eccentric nanny who secretive took 100,000 candid photos of people on the street.

| THE READER |

film

Matewan

NY Film Critics Series: Locke

Dir. Steven Knight. Tuesday, April 29, 7 pm Followed by streaming interviews with Tom Hardy and Steven Knight.

April 26, 27, May 1, 3, 4 & 8 Celebrating 100 years of Charlie Chaplin on screen!

Tickets just $2.50 for kids 12 & under!

Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte

Live: Saturday, April 26, 11:55 am Encore: Wednesday, April 30, 6 pm Presented with Opera Omaha. Prelude Talk before live broadcast.


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| THE READER |

APRIL 24 - 30, 2014

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Presented by

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Friday, May 2

24th & N 5:30 PM - 10:30 PM

Food, Fun and Fiesta on Friday! - Authentic Mexican fare and margaritas - Live music all evening, contests and more - Free shuttle service to and from South High parking lot (23th & J) by Shamrock Limousine

LIVE MUSIC 5:30 Mariachi Las Cecilias 6:30 DJ 7:00 Hector Anchando 8:30 The 70s Show

CELEBRATE THE READER’S 20TH ANNIVERSARY Portion of proceeds benefits Salvation Army Kroc Center

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The Reader May 24 - 30, 2014  

Newsweekly Omaha Nebraska Arts Entertainment Sports Film

The Reader May 24 - 30, 2014  

Newsweekly Omaha Nebraska Arts Entertainment Sports Film

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